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law, I would even wish it in this case; in all the rest this article cannot be mended.

REX. That dan

ger is well to be foreseen, lest he upon the one part commit unpardonable errors, and I on the other part

finding guilty, because the be very sorry malice on his part will be should happen; thought the deeper source of but, it is a future the offence; so there will be contingent, that ground for mercy, on his part, is, if the peers upon the nature of the proof, should acquit because it rests chiefly upon him, and find presumptions. For, certainly, him not guilty. there may be an evidence so balanced, as it may have sufficient matter for the conscience of the peers to convict him, and yet leave sufficient matter in the conscience of a king, upon the same evidence, to pardon his life; because the peers are astringed by necessity, either to acquit or condemn; but grace is free. And For matter of examination, or other proceedfor my part, I think the evi-ings, my lord chancellor, with my advice, hath dence in this present case will be of such a nature.

set down

Thirdly, It shall be my care so to moderate the manner of charging him, as it might make him not odious beyond the extent of mercy.

REX. This article cannot be amended.

Lastly, all these points of mercy and favour, are to be understood with this limitation, if he do not, by his contemptuous and insolent carriage at the bar, make himself incapable and unworthy of them.

seem to punish him in

the spirit of

The third case
is, if he should
stand mute,
and will not
plead, whereof
your majesty
knoweth there desperation; so, nevertheless,


been secret question.


In this case, I should think fit, that, as in public, both myself and chiefly my lord chancellor, (sitting then as Lord Steward of England) should dehort and deter him from that

for him, as was done for Wes-
ton, which was to adjourn the
court for some days, upon a
Christian ground, that he may
have time to turn from that
mind of destroying himself;
during which time your ma-
jesty's farther pleasure may be

REX. This is so

The fourth In this case, the lord stewcase is, that, ard must be provided what to which I should do. For, as it hath been never

seen (as I conceive it) that there should be any rejecting of the verdict, or any respiting of the judgment of the acquittal; so, on the other side, this case requireth, that because there be many high and henious offences (though not capital,) for which he may be questioned in the Star Chamber, or otherwise, that there be some touch of that in general, at the conclusion, by my Lord Steward of England. And, that, therefore, he be remanded to the Tower, as close prisoner.

To-morrow, being Monday, for the re-examination of the lady.

Wednesday next, for the meeting of the judges, concerning the evidence.

Thursday, for the examination of Somerset himself, according to your majesty's instructions. Which three parts, when they shall be performed, I will give your majesty advertisement with speed, and in the mean time be glad to receive from your majesty (whom it is my part to inform truly) such directions, or significations of your pleasure, as this advertisement may induce, and that with speed, because the time cometh on. Well remembering who is the person, whom your majesty admitted to this secret; I have sent this letter open unto him, that he may take your majesty's times to report it, or show it unto you, assuring myself that nothing is more firm than his trust, tried to your majesty's commandments;

Your majesty's most humble and most bounden subject and servant.

April 28, 1616.

that as much should be done SIR FRANCIS BACON, THE KING'S ATTORNEY



I send you the bill for his majesty's signature, reformed according to his majesty's amendments, both in the two places (which I assure you, were altered with great judgment) and in the third place, which his majesty termed a question only. But he is an idle body, that thinketh his majesty asketh an idle question; and therefore his majesty's questions are to be answered, by taking away the cause of the question, and not by replying.

For the name, his majesty's will is a law in but you may think your private fortunes establishthose things; and to speak the truth, it is a well-ed; and therefore it is now time, that you should sounding, and noble name, both here and abroad: refer your actions to the good of your sovereign, and being your proper name, I will take it for a and your country. It is the life of an ox or beast good sign, that you shall give honour to your always to eat, and never exercise; but men are dignity, and not your dignity to you. Therefore borr (and especially Christian men) not to cram I have made it Viscount Villiers, and for your in their fortunes, but to exercise their virtues; and barony, I will keep it for an earldom: for though yet the other hath been unworthy, and (thanks be the other had been more orderly, yet that is as to God) sometimes unlucky humour of great perusual, and both alike good in law. sons in our times. Neither will your future fortune be the farther off; for assure yourself, that fortune is of a woman's nature, and will sooner follow by slighting, than by too much wooing. And in this dedication of yourself to the public, I recommend unto you principally, that which I think, was never done since I was born; and which, because it is not done, hath bred almost a wilderness and solitude in the king's service; which is, that you countenance, and encourage, and advance able men, in all kinds, degrees, and professions. For in the time of the Cecils, the father and the son, able men were by design and of purpose suppressed: and though, of late, choice goeth better, both in church and commonwealth, yet money and turn-serving, and cunning canvasses and importunity, prevaileth too much. And in places of moment, rather make able and honest men yours, than advance those that are other. wise, because they are yours. As for cunning and corrupt men, you must (I know) sometimes use them, but keep them at a distance; and let it appear rather, that you make use of them, than that they lead you. Above all depend wholly (next unto God) upon the king, and be ruled (as hitherto you have been) by his instructions, for that is best for yourself. For the king's care and thoughts for you are according to the thoughts of a great king; whereas your thoughts concerning yourself are, and ought to be, according to the thoughts of a modest man. But let me not weary you: the sum is, that you think goodness the best part of greatness, and that you remember whence your rising comes, and make return accordingly. God keep you.

Aug. 12, 1616.

For Roper's place, I would have it by all means despatched; and therefore I marvel it lingereth. It were no good manners, to take the business out of my lord treasurer's hands, and therefore I purpose to write to his lordship, if I hear not from him first, by Mr. Deckome; but if I hear of any delay, you will give me leave (especially since the king named me) to deal with Sir Joseph Roper myself; for neither I, nor my lord treasurers can deserve any great thanks in this business of yours, considering the king hath spoken to Sir Joseph Roper, and he hath promised; and, besides, the thing itself is so reasonable, as it ought to be as soon done as said. I am now gotten into the country to my house, where I have some little liberty, to think of that I would think of, and not of that which other men hourly break their head withal, as it was at London. Upon this you may conclude, that most of my thoughts are to his majesty, and then you cannot be far off. God ever keep you, and prosper you: I rest always,

Your true and most dutiful servant. The 5th of August, one of the happiest days.




I have sent you now your patent, creation of Lord Bletchly of Bletchly, and of Viscount Villiers. Bletchly is your own, and I liked the sound of the name better than Whaddon; but the name will be hid, for you will be called Viscount Villiers. I have put them in a patent, after the manner of the patent for earls, where baronies are Joined; but the chief reason was, because I would avoid double prefaces, which had not been fit; nevertheless, the ceremony of robing, and otherwise, must be double.

And now, because I am in the country, I will send vou some of my country fruits, which with me are good meditations; which, when I am in the city, are choked with business.

After that the king shall have watered your new dignities, with the bounty of the lands which he intends you, and that some other things concerning your means, which are now likewise in Intention, shall be settled upon you, I do not see,



IT MAY PLEASE YOUR EXcellent Majesty,

I send your majesty enclosed, my Lord Coke's answers, I will not call them rescripts, much less oracles. They are of his own hand, and offered to me (as they are) in writing, not required by me to have them set down in writing, though I am glad of it, for my own discharge. I thought it my duty, as soon as I received them, instantly to send them to your majesty, and forbear, for the present, to speak farther of them. I, for my part, (though this Moscovia weather be a little too hard

upon your majesty this day, all respects set aside; but my lord treasurer, in respect of the season, and much other business, was willing to save me. I will only conclude, touching these papers, with a text divided; I cannot say " Oportuit hæc fieri," but I may say, "Finis autem nondum." God preserve your majesty.

for my constitution,) was ready to have waited | may say to your lordship, in the confidence of your poor kinsman, and a man by you advanced, "in idem fer opem qui spem dedisti :" for I am sure, it was not possible for a man living to have received from another more significant and comfortable words of hope: your lordship being pleased to tell me, during the course of my last service, that you would raise me, and that, when you are resolved to raise a man, you were more careful of him than himself, and that what you had done for me in my carriage, was a benefit for me, but

Feb. 14, at 12 o'clock.

I humbly pray your majesty, to keep the papers of no use to your lordship; and, therefore, I might safe.

assure myself, you would not leave me there, with
many like speeches; which I know too well my
duty to take any other hold of, than the hold of a
thankful remembrance: and I know, and all the
world knoweth, that your lordship is no dealer of
holy water, but noble and real; and on my part,
on sure ground, that I have committed nothing
that deserve
any alteration; and if I cannot
observe you as I would, your lordship will impute
it to my want of experience, which I shall gather
better, when I am once settled.

And therefore my hope is, your lordship will finish a good work, and consider, that time groweth precious, and that I am now "vergentibus annis:" and although I know your fortune is not to want a hundred such as I am, yet I shall be ever ready to give you my best and first fruits, and to supply, as much as in me lieth, a worthiness by thankfulness.


Your majesty's most humble and
devoted subject and servant.

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Do not think me forgetful, or altered towards you: but if I should say, I could do you any good, I should make my power more than it is. I do fear that which I am right sorry for, that grow more impatient and busy than at first, which makes me exceedingly fear the issue of that which seemeth not to stand at a stay. I myself am out of doubt, that you have been miserably abused, when you were first seduced; and that which I take in compassion, others may take in severity. I pray God, that understands us all better than we understand one another, continue you, as I hope he will, at least, within the bounds of loyalty to his majesty, and natural piety to your country. And I entreat you much, to meditate sometimes upon the effect of superstition in this last powdertreason, fit to be tabled and pictured in the chambers of meditation, as another hell above the ground; and well justifying the censure of the heathen, that "Superstition is far worse than Atheism," by how much it is less evil to have no good opinion of God at all, than such as are impious towards his divine majesty and goodness. Good Mr. Matthews, receive yourself back from these courses of perdition. Willing to have written a great deal more, I continue

Your, etc.


IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MOst excellent Majesty. I dare not presume any more to reply upon your majesty, but reserve my defence till I attend your majesty at your happy retnrn, when I hope verily to approve myself not only a true servant to your majesty, but a true friend to my Lord of Buckingham; and for the times also, I hope to give your majesty a good account, though distance of place may obscure them. But there is one part of your majesty's letter, that I could be sorry to take time to answer; which is, that your majesty conceives, that whereas I wrote that the height of my lord's fortune might make him secure, I mean, that he was turned proud, or unknowing of himself. Surely, the opinion I have ever had of my lord (whereof your majesty is best witness) is far from


I am not ignorant how mean a thing I stand for, that. But my meaning was plain and simple, in desiring to come into the solicitor's place for that his lordship might, through his great fortune, I know well, it is not the thing it hath been, time be the less apt to cast and foresee the unfaithfulhaving wrought an alteration, both in the profes-ness of friends, and the malignity of enemies, and sion, and in that special place. Yet, because I accidents of times. Which is a judgment (your think it will increase my practice, and that it may majesty knoweth better than I) that the best ausatisfy my friends, and because I have been voiced thors make of the best, and best tempered spirits to it, I would be glad it were done. Wherein I ut sunt res humanæ;" insomuch as Guicei



Jan. 2, 1618.

ardini maketh the same judgment, not of a parti- | would do, in this, which is not proper for me, nor cular person, but of the wisest state of Europe, in my element, I shall make your majesty amends the senate of Venice, when he saith, their prospe- in some other thing, in which I am better bred. rity had made them secure, and under-weighers God ever preserve, etc. of perils. Therefore, I beseech your majesty, to deliver me in this, from any the least imputation to my dear and noble lord and friend. And so expecting, that that sun which, when it went from us, left us cold weather, and now it is returned towards us hath brought with it a blessed harvest, will, when it cometh to us, dispel and disperse all mists and mistakings. I am, etc.

July 31, 1617.


IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY, I do many times, with gladness, and for a remedy of my other labours, revolve in my mind the great happiness which God (of his singular goodness) hath accumulated upon your majesty every way, and how complete the same would be, if the state of your means were once rectified, and well ordered; your people military and obedient, fit for war, used to peace; your church illightened with good preachers, as a heaven of stars; your judges learned, and learning from you, just, and just by your example; your nobility in a right distance between crown and people, no oppressors of the people, no over-shadowers of the crown; your council full of tributes of care, faith, and freedom; your gentlemen, and justices of peace, willing to apply your royal mandates to the nature of their several counties, but ready to obey; your servants in awe of your wisdom, in hope of your goodness; the fields growing every day, by the improvement and recovery of grounds, from the desert to the garden; the city grown from wood to brick; your sea-walls, or Pomerium of your island, surveyed, and in edifying; your merchants embracing the whole compass of the world, east, west, north, and south; the times give you peace, and, yet offer you opportunities of action abroad; and, lastly, your excellent royal issue entaileth these blessings and favours of God to descend to all posterity. It resteth, therefore, that God having done so great things for your majesty, and you for others, you would do so much for yourself, as to go through (according to your good beginnings) with the rectifying and settling of your estate and means, which only is wanting, "Hoc rebus defuit unum." I, therefore, whom only love and duty to your majesty, and your royal line, hath made a financier, do intend to present unto your majesty a perfect book of your estate, like a perspective glass, to draw your estate nearer to your sight; beseeching your majesty to conceive, that if I have not attained to do that I


IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MOST EXCEllent Majesty, Time hath been, when I have brought unto you "Gemitum Columbæ" from others, now I bring it from myself. I fly unto your majesty with the wings of a dove, which, once within these seven days, I thought, would have carried me a higher flight. When I enter into myself, I find not the materials of such a tempest as is come upon me. I have been (as your majesty knoweth best) never author of any immoderate counsel, but always desired to have things carried "suavibus modis." I have been no avaricious oppressor of the people. I have been no haughty, or intole rable, or hateful man, in my conversation or carriage: I have inherited no hatred from my father, but am a good patriot born. Whence should this be; for these are the things that use to raise dislikes abroad.

For the House of Commons, I began my credit there, and now it must be the place of the sepulture thereof. And yet this Parliament, upon the message touching religion, the old love revived, and they said, I was the same man still, only honesty was turned into honour.

For the Upper House, even within these days, before these troubles, they seemed as to take me into their arms, finding in me ingenuity, which they took to be the true straight line of nobleness, without crooks or angles.

And for the briberies and gifts wherewith I am charged, when the books of hearts shall be opened, I hope I shall not be found to have the troubled fountain of a corrupt heart, in a depraved habit of taking rewards to pervert justice; howsoever I may be frail, and partake of the abuses of the times.

And therefore I am resolved, when I come to my answer, not to trick my innocency (as I writ to the Lords) by cavillations or voidances; but to speak to them the language that my heart speaketh to me, in excusing, extenuating, or ingenuous confessing; praying God to give me the grace to see to the bottom of my faults, and that no hardness of heart do steal upon me, under show of more neatness of conscience, than is cause.

But not to trouble your majesty any longer, craving pardon for this long mourning letter; that which I thirst after, as the hart after the streams, is, that I may know, by my matchless friend that

beth; wherein I may note much, but this at this
time, that as her majesty did always right to his
majesty's hopes, so his highness doth, in all
things, right to her memory; a very just and
princely retribution. But from this occasion, by
a very easy ascent, I passed farther, being put in
mind, by this representative of her person, of the
more true and more perfect representative, which
is, of her life and government. For as statues
and pictures are dumb histories, so histories are
speaking pictures; wherein (if my affection be
not too great, or my reading too small) I am of
this opinion, that if Plutarch were alive to write
lives by parallels, it would trouble him, for virtue
and fortune both, to find for her a parallel amongst
women. And though she was of the passive
sex, yet her government was so active, as, in my
simple opinion, it made more impression upon
the several states of Europe, than it received
from thence. But I confess unto your lordship,

Hearing that you are at leisure to peruse story,

could do in your majesty's times, which, being but a leaf or two, I pray your pardon, if I send it for your recreation, considering, that love must creep where it cannot go. But to this I add these petitions: first, that if your majesty do dislike any thing, you would conceive I can amend it upon your least beck. Next, that if I have not spoken of your majesty encomiastically, your majesty will be pleased only to ascribe it to the law of a history, which doth not clutter together praises upon the first mention of a name, but rather disperseth them, and weaveth them throughout the whole narration. And as for the proper place of commemoration, (which is in the period of life,) I pray God I may never live to write it. Thirdly, that the reason why I presumed to think of this oblation, was because, whatsoever my disability be, yet I shall have that advantage which almost no writer of history hath had, in that I shall write the times, not only since I could remember, but since I could observe. And, lastly, that it is only for your majesty's reading.

a desire took me to make an experiment what II could not stay here, but went a little farther into the consideration of the times which have passed since King Henry the Eighth; wherein I find the strangest variety, that in so little number of successions of any hereditary monarchy, hath ever been known; the reign of a child, the offer of a usurpation, though it were but as a diary ague; the reign of a lady married to a foreigner, and the reign of a lady, solitary and unmarried: So that, as it cometh to pass, in massive bodies, that they have certain trepidations, and waverings, before they fix and settle; so it seemeth, that by the providence of God, this monarchy (before it was to settle in his majesty and his generations, in which I hope it is now established forever) hath had these preclusive changes in these barren princes. Neither could I contai myself here, (as it is easier for a man to multiply, than to stay a wish,) but calling to remembrance the unworthiness of the History of England, in the main continuance thereof, and the partiality and obliquity of that of Scotland, in the latest and largest author that I have seen; I conceived, it would be an honour for his majesty, and a work very memorable, if this island of Great Britain, as it is now joined in monarchy for the ages to come, so it were joined in history for the imes past; and that one just and complete history were compiled of both nations. And if any man think, it may refresh the memory of former discord, he may satisfy himself with the verse, "Olim hæc meminisse juvabit." For the case being now altered, it is matter of comfort and gratulation, to remember former troubles. Thus much, if it may please your lordship, was in the optative mood, and it was time that I should look a little into the potential; wherein the hope that I received was grounded upon three observations. The first, of these times, which flourish in learning, both of art, and language, which givetn hope, not only that it may be done. but that it

presenteth to you this letter, your majesty's heart
(which is an abyssus of goodness, as I am an
abyssus of misery) towards me. I have been
ever your man, and counted myself but an
usufructuary of myself, the property being yours.
And now making myself an oblation, to do with
me as may best conduce to the honour of your
justice, the honour of your mercy, and the use of
your service, resting as

Clay in your majesty's gracious hands,

March 25, 1620.




Some late act of his majesty, referred to some former speech which I have heard from your lordship, bred in me a great desire, and by strength of desire a boldness, to make an humble proposition to your lordship, such as in me can be no better than a wish; but if your lordship should apprehend it, it may take some good and worthy effect. The act I speak of, is the order given by his majesty for the erection of a tomb or monument for our late sovereign, Queen Eliza

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